Rain date: Monday, 29 June
250th anniversary of the birth of the composer For more than 60 years in the town of Martonvásár, the Hungarian National Philharmonic Orchestra’s concert series Beethoven in the Park has provided an unrivalled classical music experience for the summer season.
This year’s event – the 62nd – promises to be a truly special occasion. We will pay tribute to the 250th birthday of the Viennese maestro as part of Martonvásár’s Beethoven Anniversary Year programmes. On this celebratory occasion, the audience will enjoy the composer’s remarkable works across five nights, instead of the usual three.
And with the help of some prestigious Hungarian solo performers, all nine of Beethoven’s symphonies will be performed in Brunswick Castle’s beautiful park. The conductor for the concerts will be Zsolt Hamar, the musical director of the Hungarian National Philharmonic Orchestra.
Although today it is perhaps heard less frequently than any of its fellows, the Symphony No. 8 from 1812 was Beethoven’s own favourite among the nine that he wrote. The work is surprising in many respects: it is as if Beethoven followed up on his three preceding symphonies by returning to the framework that Haydn had developed for the genre with a four-movement, but still shorter.
The Rondo for Piano and Orchestra in B major was originally intended as the closing movement of the Piano Concerto No. 2. However, it was only completed after Beethoven’s death, by the composer’s student Carl Czerny. Ádám Szokolay, the soloist performing the piece, is only a few months older than Beethoven was at the time of composing this piece.
Composed between 1802 and 1808, the “Pastoral” sixth symphony stands out from Beethoven’s other works in the genre. It is the only one to comprise five movements, and he also gave each moment a title suggesting a programme to the music. The first two moments depict encounters between humans and nature, while the scherzo conveys the merry coexistence of village people, followed by two movements illustrating a storm and the feelings of gratitude that it leaves in its wake.